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President Nixon and the Role of Intelligence in the 1973 Arab-Israeli War

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This collection highlights the causes and consequences of US Intelligence Community’s (IC) failure to foresee the October 1973 Arab-Israeli War, also known as the October War or the Yom Kippur War. A coalition of Arab nations led by Egypt and Syria launched a surprise attack on Israel on October 6, the day of Yom Kippur. Prior to October 6, the CIA concluded that the Arabs would not attack, so the offensive surprised US policymakers as well as Israel. Directorate of Intelligence (DI) analysts believed that Arab military inferiority would militate against an attack on Israel. DI analysis did not explore the possibility that leaders might go to war--even at the risk of losing--to pursue political objectives. According to an internal postmortem, Agency analysis was impaired by preconceptions about Arab military capabilities, information overload, rational actor modeling and groupthink.

View the OPA Press Release and Collection Booklet

Documents in this Collection

Documents in PDF format require the Adobe Acrobat Reader®

SPECIALCOLLECTION

Central Intelligence Bulletin: Syria-Israel

Document Number: 51112a4a993247d4d8394410
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1973-12-15.pdf217.11 KB

SPECIALCOLLECTION

Central Intelligence Bulletin: USSR, Arab States-Israel

Document Number: 51112a4a993247d4d839441e
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1973-10-27A.pdf300.89 KB

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Central Intelligence Bulletin: USSR-Syria

Document Number: 51112a4a993247d4d839443d
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1973-10-04.pdf27.86 KB

SPECIALCOLLECTION

CIA - Office of National Estimates: The Expulsion from Egypt - Some Consequences for the Soviets

Document Number: 51112a4b993247d4d8394533
AttachmentSize
1972-08-29.pdf640.14 KB

SPECIALCOLLECTION

CIA - Office of National Estimates: The Russian Ouster--Causes and Consequences

Document Number: 51112a4b993247d4d8394546
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1972-08-22.pdf767.75 KB

SPECIALCOLLECTION

CIA Center for the Study of Intelligence: Intelligence and the 1973 Arab-Israeli War

Document Number: 51112a4a993247d4d8394488
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2012-12-10E.pdf79.8 KB

SPECIALCOLLECTION

CIA Historical Collections Division: CIA's Middle East Task Force and the 1973 Arab-Israeli War

Document Number: 51112a4a993247d4d8394482
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2012-12-10F.pdf63.68 KB

SPECIALCOLLECTION

CIA Memo: Brezhnevs Political Position in the Wake of the Middle East War; Excerpts from 5 December European Brief in Reference to Brezhnev

Document Number: 51112a4b993247d4d8394529
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1973-12-10B.pdf248.74 KB

SPECIALCOLLECTION

CIA Memo: Post Mortem Phase II

Document Number: 51112a4b993247d4d8394512
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1973-12-06A.pdf172.97 KB

SPECIALCOLLECTION

CIA Memo: The USSR and the Arab Oil Weapon

Document Number: 51112a4b993247d4d839453a
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1973-12-07B.pdf58.71 KB

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